A.M. Best upgraded Vermont Mutual earlier this week
Vermont Mutual, one of the oldest mutual P&C insurers in the country, has something to celebrate this holiday season. This week, A.M. Best announced that it had upgraded the financial strength rating of the Montpelier-based insurer from an A (Excellent) to A+ (Superior). The global rating agency also upgraded the insurer’s credit ratings from “a+” to “aa-.” The improved ratings apply not only to the Vermont Mutual Insurance Company but to its two fully reinsured susbsidiaries as well, the Northern Security Insurance Company, Inc. and Granite Mutual Insurance Company. All of the companies are members of the Vermont Mutual Insurance Group and domiciled in Montpelier, Vermont. Commenting upon the good news, Vermont Mutual President and CEO, William A. Catto, said,
We are very pleased that A.M. Best has acknowledged our exemplary performance over the past decade by upgrading our Financial Security Rating to A+. Certainly, none of the growth, profitability and stability that led to this upgrade would have been possible without the loyalty, dedication and commitment of our employees and Independent Agency partners. While we often reflect on the virtues of the Independent Agency system and the value agents brings to each community they serve, this is truly a time when we recognize just how fortunate we are to enjoy so many wonderful partnerships throughout our territory and appreciate how much we can accomplish by working together.”
Concurring with the role Vermont Mutual’s partners had played in the insurer’s rating upgrade, Executive Vice President Dan Bridge, echoed Ms. Catto’s comments,
Our independent agents and our employees partner each day to provide comprehensive and cost effective solutions to people and businesses throughout the northeast. This upgrade to A+ from A.M. Best is recognition of those efforts and confirmation that our policyholders have chosen the right agent and company for peace of mind and quality insurance protection.”
In announcing the rating upgrade, A.M. Best highlighted Vermont Mutual’s ability to consistently outperform the industry composite. “The rating actions reflect Vermont Mutual’s favorable underwriting and operating results, which have consistently outperformed the industry composite in recent years.” In addition, “…Vermont Mutual continues to maintain a solid risk adjusted capitalization, a well-established market presence in the New England states and knowledge of local insurance issues.”
A.M. Best did note that one of Vermont Mutual strengths, its business concentration in New England, could also become a weakness for the insurer as it exposes the company to weather-related events and competitive market conditions. The rating agency noted, however, that the insurer maintains a comprehensive reinsurance program to mitigate any potential catastrophe losses.
Vermont Mutual is one of the ten oldest mutual P/C insurers in the U.S.
First chartered in 1828, Vermont Mutual has operated as a property/casualty mutual insurance company continuously since its founding. The insurer, along with is wholly owned subsidiary, Northern Security Insurance Company, Inc. and the affiliated Granite Mutual Insurance Company, provides coverage throughout New England and New York exclusively through its more than 500 independent agency partners. As a result, the Vermont Insurance Group insures approximately 285,000 policyholders with a direct written premium of more than $350,000,000.